Registering to Vote–2012 Election

I hate bureaucrats. I absolutely can not stand them.

Every year, Octoberish, I go to register to vote weather I need to or not. Usually I would get this done at the post office or through work. There is no central human resources office for substitutes–well one that can do stuff like this–and I did not want to go to the post office because the guy who serves my neighborhood is a complete tool, so I went looking for another location. Like an idiot, I didn’t use Google, I did a physical walk-around search. After three stops, I ended up at the county election office. In the past, the courthouses and federal buildings had spots to pick-up and drop-off registration forms, but no longer.

Cliched-Awful. The county office is on the third floor and looks like every Kafkaesque bureaucratic nightmare I’ve ever seen on TV or in movies. Small office with many employees all with desks piled high with papers and files. The floor was cluttered and piled high, too. The guy at the counter was helping five other people with a nosy, overbearing supervisor barking instructions and overriding the guy. Her desk was covered in files and the shelves behind her were filled with files and file boxes. There were other people walking around not doing anything, but looking busy with open files in their hands and one person who seemed to be having a psychotic episode in a back office.

Forms. The forms were grainy photo-copies. There was no place to fill the forms out except for a tiny table where a couple were filling out forms and the counter everyone else was crowded around. I filled out my form and my son Rob, who will be voting for the first time, filled out his. Rob had some questions, but the counter-dude was busy data-entrying other registration forms, so I answered them with the bossy supervisor repeating exactly what I said from her desk fifteen feet away. Oooo, she had one of those huge, fake, evil-passive-aggressive smiles that always scares the crap out of me. My anxiety drive was starting to overheat and I wanted to escape. Finally Rob got it done and we handed it over.

Precinct Polling Places. Last time I voted, the polling station was moved at the last minute. Counter-guy told me the station was going to be at Independence High. I know of four traditional polling stations that are closer. Independence High is two miles away. I asked why and the supervisor lady automatically starts spouting that the location was not picked to discriminate against minorities.

What? Where did that come from?

I affirm many of my neighbors are Hispanic and the polling location will be an inconvenience to get to. I grew up right across the Provo River from Independence High, so I know the short-cut up frontage road behind the trailer park crossing the brand new bridge connecting to Independence Avenue and the school for criminal and delinquent youth. The regular route is more than five miles long and even then, Independence High is hard to find. I mention this and the supervisor reaffirms the choice was not meant to discriminate.

Google. Getting home, I finally Google to see if the internet agrees with plastic-smile lady. It doesn’t. Google reports the correct polling place is even further away at Provost School, two and a half miles in the opposite direction and equally hard to find.

I’m emailing the County Election Commissioner tomorrow. There has to be a closer location to vote, like Franklin Elementary half a mile away where several precincts and the local Republican Caucuses vote.

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8 thoughts on “Registering to Vote–2012 Election

  1. It’s so hard, the whole voting process. It’s probably a good thing that you went to the hassle, because you wouldn’t want to let it deter you from actually expressing your views (in the limited way that a vote allows us to).

    • Absolutely! Democracy is very important to me and going through the BS of bureaucratic paper-wrangling is worth it.

      One of the biggest problems though, is so few people are willing to through the pain to do it. Many people simple throw their vote away thinking crap like: “What’s the point.”

      Still, I do it. I also tell those who refuse to vote and still bitch that all the problems are their fault.

      • That’s true. I have the same argument every time I vote (in the presence of my mother). In the past I have usually destroyed my vote. I don’t see that as being me not using the vote. I’m just trying to show that I’m unimpressed with the candidates/policies etc… I’m going to try and find a party that I really like (ha) next time…

      • I’ve never found a party I have ever like 100%. I have always contemplated the recent past of the party and as much of the candidates record and then vote based on that. So, with the President, nothing he has done has surprised me. With Bush, I knew he was going to invade Iraq, he just need the expediency of 9/11 to do it. With Romney, if he wins, I think he will do his best to do what he has done in the past: cut the deficit, reduce the size of government and work bipartisanly. He has always had to do these thing. I am sure he will do so again. I like P. Obama and another four years of him would not be that bad. It would be more of the same. The deficit will be reduced, but taxes, entitlements and government will grow. I don’t know a lot about the politicians in the UK, but I would do my best to do there what I do here if the requirement ever arrived.

      • Hmm. I think you’re right, Aaron. I need to educate myself on the parties and their policies. One of my problems is that I feel most of them go into politics with good intentions, but somewhere along the line they often get sucked into corrupt outlooks etc… Hmm. Thank you for the tips. 🙂

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